Stephen and I moved into our townhome two years ago with the plan to stay here until we “outgrew” it. I remember one night, we slow danced in the kitchen (maybe stephen was just hugging me? I think we were dancing though. #perspective) and stephen said to me “I like this place and I want to be here for 5-10 years. I sighed onto his shoulder and said “wow, that sounds amazing! I’m on board!"
Why we decided to move...again
So what happened to change that? The simplest answer is that we saw the market heating up explosively in our area and started to ask the question “If someone handed us a check for a down payment, would we walk away from it?” We decided that we didn’t want to walk away from that opportunity. Selling our townhome at a strategic time could completely provide the down payment we’d been saving toward for a single family home.
Through a cool set of circumstances, we landed a home that seemed unattainable to us! It’s spacious and perfect for hosting, is in a lovely neighborhood we’d liked for a while, and has space for each of us to have an office! We quickly knew the feel we wanted to evoke in the space and got to work designing it! Here's some inspiration and our process:
Our home design process: Brainstorming
We believe process is king in all things, so as we embarked on designing our home we spent a lot of time in the brainstorming phase of our process. We pinned (see our boards here: design sense, living room, kitchen, and bedroom) discussed, pointed, and collected. We wrote down words, feelings, and lifestyle goals.
And, then we let it all sit. This part is important!
If you want to have a genuine point of view in your design, business perspective, and life, know when to let things breathe.
Our home design process: Insight
Pretty quickly, we saw a trend and knew that we wanted our home to remind us of the relaxed and artful french lifestyle we fell in love with on our trip to France last year. We wanted the downstairs to remind us of our time in Paris, with a minimal, collected, gallery feel. Simple and clean lines, textural elements, and artful vignettes reigned in our brainstorming.
We wanted other parts of our home to remind us of our stay in the french countryside-simple, historic, and welcoming. Kind of a city house/country house type of feel. Everything makes sense together and tells the same story, but doesn’t look the same.
We chose a few anchor images for each room and created some simple moodboards
Living room Inspiration
We want our living room to feel elegant, minimal, and collected. We fell in love with the idea of clean lines, historic touches, and beautiful art for this space. We still want it to feel warm and inviting, so we'll share how we create that welcoming feel in a largely white gallery inspired space in future posts-any ideas?
And yes, we're totally doing gray trim throughout. Stephen claims the heart wants what the heart wants. And his heart wants white walls and gray trim. I love that guy :)
via Joanna Laven
Dining Room Inspiration
We will have a square dining area between our kitchen and living room. For the LONGEST time, I wanted a specific long modern farmhouse table. I'd been saving up for it and was almost ready to pull the trigger when I realized that it would look ridiculous in a square dining area. I really wanted a classic design staple with a european feel. I fell in love with this image and then Stephen and I began researching the styles a bit more and it all fell into place!
A Saarinen style tulip table was a great nod to a design classic and kept with the minimal aesthetic. These gorgeous cane-back Thonet chairs were largely produced in Europe and are pretty difficult to find stateside as the trend didn't really filter to us at the time of production. I love the nod to both texture and European design for both pieces. We currently have the Thonet chairs (OMG SO EXCITED!) and will get the Tulip table soon. So excited for this room!
We wanted the palette to remind us of the french buildings with their classic slate and plaster exteriors, mansered roofs, and the finishes to take on the pretty patina of all of the buildings we loved in the French countryside. More on that soon...!
Some of our most relaxing memories on our trip through France and Italy last year were waking up in a French farmhouse in the Loire Valley, hearing the roosters, and finding fresh eggs and croissant at our door. It was the most pastoral and welcoming place and we wanted to feel that sense of deep relaxation and contentment in our master bedroom design.
We decided to go with a bit more character and charm in this space, focusing on historic furniture and art pieces, balanced by a moody gray-green paint and simple, textural linen bedding. I am so excited to see this room come together!
Where are we now?
So where are we in the process now? We wait :) We are packing up our lovely townhome and getting ready to move soon. We cannot wait to begin implementing the designs we have in mind and sometimes the suspense of waiting feels agonizing! In the meantime, tell me, what do you think of our design inspiration? Can we swing the white palette or is it too risky?